Historical Stages in the Commodification of the
Traditional Family Roles/Tasks

Food is an activity that has cultural reverberations.
Who prepares, what is prepared, and how you eat all shape social issues.


Progressive Era - Early 1900's:

bulletCampbell's canned soup ads advertise for women to buy its product because it's the best one
bulletAdvertisements used traditional gender images to encourage the consumption of their product by American families
bulletEstablished the "Mom in the Kitchen" image
bulletIndustrialization, immigration, war, and economic depression changed workforce
bulletAds imply that by using their products, women were being more efficient and productive
bulletCampbell's ads implied that by feeding children their product that they would be more healthy, fight diseases, and have enough energy to succeed in an economically competitive world

1950: WHATABURGER is founded

1954: Burger King is founded

1955: McDonald's is founded


bulletCookbooks are published on how to get a man and keep him
bulletSimultaneously, marital sex manuals are published that evoked women's role in cooking and food preparation in their prescriptions for women's marital sexual behavior
bulletManuals consisted of only ONE nonsexual issue: COOKING
bulletLate 60's early 70's: Women's Movement
bulletPublication and success of Playboy
bulletPost WWII: fear that marriage was deteriorating
bulletCookbooks published showing more girls than boys in pictures
bulletProcess or convenience foods a growing phenomenon

1979: McDonald's Happy Meal is introduced

2000: Campbell's ads now show men preparing dinner because wife called home saying she was caught up at work